Many people have often heard that chewing gum directly after consuming a meal is good for your teeth. However, many gums are often loaded with ingredients that are actually harmful to teeth, such as sugar and aspartame. Chewing gum that contains sugar can actually cause the enamel of the teeth to erode, which eventually leads to cavities, and the ingredient aspartame has been linked to cancer, diabetes, and birth defects.
What is Xylitol?
Derived from a plant tissue called xylose, xylitol is a crystalline alcohol that is used as a sweetener in a wide-array of foods.
How Does Xylitol Work?
Xylitol tastes just like sugar and unlike its enamel-eating counterpart, it is not converted into acids that cause tooth decay. It is able to achieve this because it reduces the level of bacteria in the saliva, sometimes up to as much as 90%. Xylitol can also repair damaged tooth enamel that has been affected by the acids that sugar produces. In addition to restoring the enamel, the amount of plaque that is present in the mouth decreases since harmful bacteria are unable to stick to the teeth after xylitol is present.
To further protect your teeth, always read the label on your gum and try to chew brands that contain xylitol and not sugar or aspartame.
If you wish to improve the appearance of your teeth or if you have cavities that you want to get rid of, we encourage you to contact our Beverly Hills office today. Dr. Kevin B. Sands looks forward to meeting and helping you achieve the best smile possible. To schedule your consultation, call (310) 273-0111 or fill out our online contact form today.